29 September 2009 /
New Zealand's very own Grand Prix cars join the historic Formula One 'grid' at Te Papa in Wellington this week. For nine days the state-of-the-art Toyota Racing Series is being contrasted with famous World Championship cars of yesteryear at the National Museums current Formula One - The Great Design Race™ exhibition.
The modern Toyota Racing Series (TRS), New Zealand's premier single-seater category, is a school holiday highlight at the Formula One - The Great Design Race™ exhibition at Te Papa from September 29 through until October 7.
The International exhibition, which began at Te Papa in July and runs until November, aims to provide the public with a greater understanding of Formula One and single-seater racing.
New Zealand's successful TRS single-seater class provides the premier launching pad for young drivers in New Zealand who aspire to higher International single-seater championships like A1 Grand Prix; and ultimately Formula One.
TRS cars are the fastest racing cars utilising current technology in New Zealand. The cars feature an Italian-sourced European specification carbon fibre chassis and are powered by an 1800cc Toyota production engine. Running on E85 bio fuel, TRS cars have a top speed of 265kph.
TRS graduates who have continued on to international success include current Red Bull Junior Brendon Hartley, A1GP Team NZ's Earl Bamber, Indy Pro Series Champion Wade Cunningham and V8 Supercar driver Shane Van Gisbergen.
The TRS display at Te Papa will include a 'two-seater' TRS demonstration car, the TRS race car transporter and a trackside pit setup. There will be floor talks from experts including TRS Category Manager Barrie Thomlinson and motorsport commentator Bob McMurray. Children can compete in TRS colouring competitions and enjoy photo opportunities behind the wheel of a TRS race car.
The Toyota series is committed to nurturing the next generation of top level racing talent and is the only class in New Zealand motorsport that offers aspiring racers vital experience with wings, slicks and composite technologies.
Toyota New Zealand has played an integral role in New Zealand's summer series for the last five years. The 2010 season begins with three International rounds next January, including the ultimate single-seater event, the New Zealand Grand Prix, at Manfeild near Palmerston North from the 12th to the 14th of February.
The New Zealand Grand Prix is one of only two FIA-sanctioned Grand Prix race events outside of Formula One.